Misconduct among police and the reforms that follow

July 6, 2020. Following updates in some of the most high profile cases in the nation right now, Bob Bianchi discusses the legal aspects and repercussions in this episode of Keeping the Peace on the Law & Crime Network.

In our first story we discuss the three police officers that have been fired for reenacting a choke hold at an Elijah McClain memorial in Aurora, CO. The police chief in Aurora called these actions reprehensible and proved that the officers cannot be trusted to keep the honor of the badge. Kirk Burkhalter, retired NYPD Detective & New York Law School Professor and

Gene Rossi, Legal Analyst weigh in.

While it may be understandable that the stress and dangers involved with police work may need to come with a gallows sense of humor, Burkhalter points out how these officers took it several steps too far by actually attending the memorial for Elijah and by smiling and posing using a choke hold. These actions by the officers obviously bring up questions about the culture of the police force.

Perhaps one of the most important things to come out of this story is the transparency that the Aurora Police Department has now used in this sad situation. The entire internal affairs report was made public, which Bianchi points out as quite novel. This transparency is something we may hope to see in the future to help hold police actions and attitudes accountable.

In other news, a recording of a police officer in the Miami airport is seen slapping a woman who is being belligerent about getting to her flight. The mayor has called the officer’s actions excessive. The panel discusses the situation from the perspective of defense. On the one hand, the officer could easily claim to have felt threatened, but could easily have chosen a less intense method of arresting the woman. On the other hand, the woman did assault the officer to begin with. This woman could easily argue excessive force on the part of the officer.

We leave you with the conversation surrounding the families left behind after police killings. It is important to remember that in all of the noise that surrounds these high-profile cases, caught up in the middle of it are the families of these people who are trying to cope.